Young voters react to 2020 election

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Energized young voters credit say they’ll always remember the 2020 election.

Albert Silva, Contributor

The 2020 presidential election was unlike any other in recent memory: historic early voter turnout in essentially every state as COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations and deaths continued to climb. The pandemic reached disturbing heights as millions of Americans participated in its most important democratic process.

Former U.S. vice president and Democratic nominee Joe Biden clinched the presidency when Pennsylvania was called Nov. 7 by media outlets, bringing him over the top of the minimum 270 Electoral College votes required to win. He also won Nevada and flipped both Arizona and Georgia, bringing him to a grand total of 306 projected Electoral College votes versus Trump’s 232 — which was the same margin when Trump bested former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in 2016.

For many young people like Arian Moreno, an 18-year old nursing student at UTEP, this year’s election was a memorable one.

“I think besides Obama’s election in 2008, I think this is the most memorable election I’ve had in my life.” Moreno said. “I thought this race was going to be a close one, people usually go for the person they already know how they lead, but in this case it might be how they take him out.”

Prior to Election Day, many young voters had high hopes as for many students this would be the first time they have ever voted in a presidential election — on both sides of the political spectrum.

Others like Alina Heredia, a 21-year old neuroscience major, credit Biden’s victory to energized young voters who recently turned 18.

“Now that a lot of young people can actually vote, Biden had a huge chance of winning,” Heredia said “I think from all the options we have, he is our best option and it would be interesting to see how he acts once in office.”

In the El Paso, Oscar Leeser received 42.48% while current Mayor Dee Margo received 24.73% of the vote. A runoff election will be held next month to declare the true winner. Along with the mayoral race, U.S. Rep. Veronica Escobar, D-Texas, won reelection to continue representing Texas’ 16th Congressional district, Henry Rivera won reelection to continue representing district 7 in the city council, Cassandra Hernandez won reelection to continue representing district 3, Iliana Holguin won a seat on the El Paso County Commissioner’s Court, Tony Gonzales defeated Democratic challenger Gina Ortiz Jones to represent Texas’ 23rd Congressional district, and Cèsar Blanco won the state Senate race to represent Texas’ Senate District 29 against Republican challenger Bethany Hatch.

Albert Silva may be reached at [email protected]; @bignoseboii on Twitter.